Elder Cyrus Wright

Primitive Baptist Minister and Distinguished Statesman

Born in South Carolina, December 26, 1805. Joined the Regular Baptist Church March 1834, came out of the water preaching. Ordained September 27, 1834. Elected to Illinois Legislature 1852. Died October 29, 1854, age 48 years, 10 months, and 3 days. Erected by the citizens of Cass and Menard counties in honor of his many social and Christian virtues. Buried at Little Shepherd Cemetery, site of Little Flock Church at the time of his death.

Signs of the Times, Vol. 12, No. 22, Nov. 14, 1844, p. 171. 

Cass County, Ill., Oct. 7, 1844.

     BROTHER  BEEBE: - Although personally a stranger to  you,  I 
wish  to  give  you some of the reasons why I am  an  Old  School 
Baptist.  I  assure  you I was not led  traditionally  into  this 
faith,  for  I was born an arminian, and raised  traditionally  a 
Methodist; neither heard I more than three Baptist sermons  until 
I  was 21 years of age.  Indeed, all my prejudices were  enlisted 
against the Baptists and their doctrine, although I was  ignorant 
of  what their doctrine was. As far back as I can trace, or  have 
any knowledge, I am the first of all my relatives by blood,  that 
has ever been called by the Baptist name. The first sermon I ever 
heard  understandingly,  was  by a man  whose  name  was  Richard 
Gardner.  This was the first preacher I ever heard  declare  that 
sinners are by nature dead in sin; and it seemed to me that  this 
sentiment was something new.  It seemed, however, to rest upon my 
mind  that  it was true, and that that was really  my  situation. 
This caused me much trouble and distress of mind. Sometime  after 
this,  a  Baptist woman, who had a Methodist husband,  died;  and 
while committing her body to the grave, it was plainly  presented 
to my mind, that she was gone to rest; but what, thought I, is to 
be  my awful situation, when, like her, I shall be called to  try 
the  reality of another world. At this moment I was  filled  with 
such  awful sensations as caused me to tremble. I felt myself  to 
be  in  a lost and condemned state, before a holy and  just  God.  
From  that  time, for about six months, I tried all  my  efforts, 
prayers,  and tears, to commend myself to the favor of  God;  but 
like the women mentioned in the gospel, I was nothing better, but 
grew worse. The things of this world lost their interest with me, 
a wife and three or four children appeared no longer a solace  to 
my  mind.  Retirement to some secret place in the  forest  became 
more  satisfactory to me than any other place. I could look  upon 
every thing in nature as being better than myself.  I had  sinned 
against a holy God, not only in practice, but I saw and felt that 
I  possessed a fountain of sin and uncleanness within me,  which, 
like  the  troubled ocean, was continually casting  up  mire  and 

     At  length, the dreaded time seemed to have come, for me  to 
receive  my  just  demerit.  I saw the sun  go  down,  but  never 
expected  to  see it rise again. I saw the justice of God  in  my 
condemnation;  but  could  see  no  way  that  Justice  could  be 
satisfied,  if  I  were saved. In this  dreadful  extremity,  and 
laying  prostrate before the Lord, with nothing to plead but  the 
mercy of God, Jesus Christ was presented to my view as a Saviour, 
and  I was enabled to see how God could be just, and the  Saviour 
of such a sinner as I. Here I saw that my salvation was  effected 
through what Christ had done, and not by what I had or could  do.  
I now understand what faith, hope, and love were.  At this time I 
was made experimentally to understand, and from my heart to  love 
the doctrine of grace and the people of God, which I had despised 
and hated.

     These  are a sketch of the reasons why I am a  Baptist;  the 
Lord  has made me so. My limits forbid that I should  enlarge  at 
this  time. If you think the above worthy a place in  the  Signs, 
you are at liberty to insert it.
     Yours in gospel bonds,



Signs of the Times, New Vernon, Orange Co., New York. 
Vol. 13, No. 4, February 15, 1845, p. 29.
Cass Co., Ill., Jan. 5, 1845.

BROTHER  BEEBE:-  In a former communication I gave  you  a  short 
statement  of  the  reason of the hope which I  have  in  Christ. 
Although  my sins were so great, and the depravity of  my  nature 
sank  me so low, under the just sentence of God's holy  law,  yet 
in a time of deep distress, extreme necessity, and when almost in 
despair,  I felt my sins removed, my soul was delivered,  and  my 
mind  was set at rest. My contemplations of the riches of  divine 
grace  were mixed with wonder that one so vile as I, should be  a 
subject  of  God's  divine favor. Although  I  felt  unworthy  to 
receive  the  promises  of  the gospel,  yet  I  could  not  help 
rejoicing  in  them.  I had previously entertained  the  opinion, 
that  when  persons had experienced religion, they would  sin  no 
more,  and  that they would be happy all the time.   I  had  also 
marked out a path in my imagination for christians to walk in, so 
straight and narrow, and sinless, that when I came to compare  my 
walk as a christian with it, I was filled with distress of  mind.  
Having  evil thoughts which I could not suppress, and  apparently 
never  in the path only when I was crossing it.  This led  me  to 
fear that I was deceived, in regard to the hope I had  cherished, 
that my deliverance was really of the Lord.  In vain I sought for 
my  old convictions and burden of guilt but could not bring  them 
back.  In short, I have been a poor doubting Thomas, the  greater 
part  of  the  time  since I first received  a  hope  in  Christ.  
Sometimes I can say "My Lord, and my God;" but at other seasons I 
am  much  cast down and dejected. I find  this  inconsistency  in 
myself,  when  I hear experiences that accord with my  own;  they 
leave me without doubt that those who relate them are christians, 
although  not  quite satisfied with my own. I think  I  can  say, 
"With  my mind I serve the law of God, but with my flesh the  law 
of  sin." I desire, through the Spirit, to mortify the  deeds  of 
the flesh, but through the grace of God I am what I am.

     I will now give you a few of my thoughts on the subject of a 
call to the christian ministry.

     It  is  certain that all our New  Testament  preachers  were 
called  by  our Lord Jesus Christ, and since his  exaltation,  he 
still calls them by his Holy Spirit, which he promised to send to 
his  children, and none have a right to preach who have not  been 
called and set apart to that work.  God's work does not mock him; 
if  he calls, he also qualifies; and if God calls  and  qualifies 
for  the ministry, it is not the work of men; nor to be  effected 
by the power or wisdom of this world.  Hence his ministers preach 
not  with  enticing words, which man's wisdom teaches,  lest  the 
cross  of Christ should be made of non-effect; but in  power  and 
demonstration  of the Spirit of God; by the authority of him  who 
bade him "go labor in my vineyard." If I did not believe that God 
had called me, unworthy though I am, and committed a dispensation 
to me, I would never open my mouth in his name again; nor  should 
I have ever done so if it had not been for a burden of mind,  and 
a "Woe is me if I preach not the gospel."

     My  brother, I have found it hard to feel reconciled to  the 
will  of  God  in  regard to this work.   When  I  read  the  woe 
pronounced  against  those  who  handle  the  word  of  the  Lord 
deceitfully,  and feel that I am under responsibility to God  and 
to  his  people,  there seems to be a woe  on  either  hand,  and 
feeling  a sense of my weakness and imperfections, I am  made  to 
tremble,  and  frequently to call on God to help me. I  have,  in 
days  that  are passed and gone, plead with him to  remove  these 
impressions  from me; but I found no relief. The church,  somehow 
or other, thought that my mind was impressed, and liberated me to 
exercise  my  gift  in  the bounds of the  church;  but  still  I 
remained silent, until the Lord, as I sometimes believe, made  me 
willing  to  trust in his all-sufficient grace.  Then  I  stepped 
forward under the cross, and found a sweet relief of mind; I then 
thought  that  I  should be troubled no more on  the  subject  of 
preaching;  but it was not long before the impressions  returned, 
and I have been compelled to try to labor in the gospel field, in 
my  feeble manner, for some twelve or thirteen years. I  had  not 
exercised my gift long, before the church saw proper to give me a 
license,  and  about one year afterwards our beloved  old  pastor 
died.  He had held the pastoral charge of four churches,  and  by 
his  death,  they  were all  left  destitute.  This  circumstance 
probably  led  the church to call for my ordination  sooner  than 
otherwise they would have done.  However, I was ordained, in Clay 
county, in this state, and attended four churches for two  years, 
and  then removed to Cass county, where I have lived nine  years, 
and where I have encountered much opposition, but having obtained 
help from God I still continue.  May grace, mercy and peace, from 
God  the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, be with you  and 
all the Israel of God.

Yours in the best of bonds,

Signs of the Times, Vol. 16, No. 13, July 1, 1848, p. 98.
Camp Grove, Ill., March 31, 1848.

     BROTHER BEEBE:- your paper is a welcome messenger to me;  it 
affords me inexpressible pleasure to read the rich communications 
that it contains, and I sometimes feel as though I were in spirit 
acquainted with many of your correspondents, whom I never  expect 
to  see in the flesh; but I humbly hope to meet them in a  better 
world  than  this. I also read with much pleasure  much  of  your 
editorial  matter;  but  I must confess that  I  cannot  see  the 
propriety  of  the distinction you make in righteousness;  but  I 
will  admit that it may be weakness in me. Dear brother,  I  feel 
incompetent to call in question your views on this, or any  other 
point  of  doctrine. But I cannot consistently subscribe  to  any 
point of doctrine that I cannot comprehend, however plain it  may 
appear to others. Believing, dear brother, as I do, that you will 
not be offended if I, though weak and unworthy, point out some of 
the unreconciliable questions which your notion of a wrought  out 
righteousness presents to my mind, I will venture to name some of 

     You  say the wrought out righteousness places the  elect  in 
the  same  situation Adam stood in before he sinned  -  as  pure, 
upright, harmless, and free from sin, as Adam was before he fell. 
My  brother,  could Adam have died in that state?  Is  not  death 
uncommissioned  only  by  sin?   Could  the  stupendous  plan  of 
redemption  ever  have reached man, if he had  continued  in  his 
primeval  rectitude? The words wrought out righteousness, I  have 
not found in the Bible; but it is plain to me that Jesus  Christ, 
our  blessed  Savior,  is  of God  made  to  his  elect,  Wisdom, 
Righteousness, Sanctification, and Redemption. The apostle  says, 
they, the elect, are by nature children of wrath, even as others; 
by  which I understand, their unrenewed state, in which they  are 
under  the law, and whatsoever the law saith, it saith  to  them, 
that  every  mouth  may be stopped, and the  whole  world  become 
guilty  before God.  I think Paul in writing to the believers  at 
Rome,  sustains  this  view, when he says that,  when  they  were 
servants  of  sin, they were free  from  righteousness.  Although 
they, as the elect, are redeemed by the precious blood of Christ, 
it is nevertheless absolutely necessary that they should be  made 
spiritually  alive,  in  order  that  they  may  enjoy  spiritual 
blessings;  but if they were not dead in sin, they could  not  be 
made  alive;  if they were servants of sin, then were  they  free 
from righteousness, but now being made free from sin, and  become 
servants of God, they have their fruit unto holiness, and the end 
everlasting life.

     Yours in the best of bonds,

     C. WRIGHT.


Signs of the Times, Vol. 16, No. 17, September 1, 1848, page 130.
Big Panther Creek, Ill., June 15, 1848.

     BROTHER  BEEBE:  - I often feel a disposition to  write  for 
publication, and more so of late; having received several letters 
from  brethren and sisters that I have never seen, requesting  me 
to do so; but a deep sense of my inability has hitherto prevented 
me. I saw a request in the ninth number of the present volume  of 
the  Signs, from a sister Smith, for me to give an exposition  of 
Acts  27:31.  "Paul said to the centurion and  to  the  soldiers, 
Except these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved."

     I will say to sister Smith, I have closely examined the text 
and  its connection, and find, that Paul, as a prisoner of  Jesus 
Christ,  had appealed from Felix to Caesar, who was presiding  at 
Rome,  and accordingly, with other prisoners, was sent under  the 
charge of Julius, a centurion, to Rome; to which city they sailed 
by the city of Crete where they were detained some time. The Lord 
made  known  to  Paul, the danger of the  voyage,  but  the  crew 
disregarded  Paul's  predictions,  and  embarked  in  a  ship  of 
Alexandria,  and  after  they  had been  tossed  by  the  tempest 
fourteen  days,  and  had  not seen the  sun,  and  having  eaten 
nothing, Paul made them all take some refreshments, and told them 
that  an  angel  of the Lord had stood by  him  that  night,  and 
assured  him that not one of their lives should be lost, but  the 
ship  only. And when they had been driven by the wind until  they 
deemed  they  drew near to some continent, they cast  anchor  and 
anxiously desired the morning. In the morning they discovered  an 
Island, and the shipmen were so anxious to get to the land,  they 
cast out the boat, which Paul saw, and said to the centurion  and 
to  the  soldiers, Except these abide in the ship, ye  cannot  be 
saved; for these were the shipmen, and if they had left Paul  and 
the centurion and soldiers in the ship, their natural lives could 
not  be saved. Paul was inspired by the Holy Ghost, and  saw  how 
their  lives were to be preserved, and when Paul had thus  spoken 
to  the centurion, the soldiers cut the rope of the boat and  let 
it drop into the sea, and the shipmen were disappointed in  their 
intentions, and consequently remained in the ship, until the ship 
drew nearer to the shore, and run aground, and when the  violence 
of  sea  had broken the ship, they all made their escape  to  the 
land, in the very way which the Lord had made known to Paul, that 
he had appointed for the preservation of their lives.

     I do not see anything figurative, or metaphorical,  intended 
by the apostle; if I did I would take pleasure in stating it.

     I am your unworthy brother, with christian respect.

         CYRUS WRIGHT.


Signs of the Times, Vol. 20, No. 19, October 1, 1852, p. 146. 

Cass County, Ill., Aug. 20, 1852.

     BROTHER  BEEBE: - The Signs of the Times continues  to  come 
tolerable regular, and it is a welcome messenger. My poor soul is 
often  made  to  rejoice  when I  read  the  able  and  christian 
communications from so many brethren and sisters, (if so I may be 
permitted  to  call  them) scattered throughout  the  height  and 
breadth  of  these  United  States.  I  am  frequently  made   to 
sympathize  and  weep  with those that weep, and,  if  I  am  not 
deceived,  I often rejoice with them that rejoice. And  often  my 
heart is made to flow with gratitude to God, that we have such  a 
medium of correspondence as the Signs, through which we can  form 
our  acquaintance  and enjoy christian affection  and  fellowship 
with so many of the dear tried and suffering saints of God.  

     We  live away here in the far west, but we hold and  believe 
the same doctrine that is generally propagated through the Signs. 
We  also reject the doctrines and commandments of men,  which  we 
judge  to be contrary to the scripture of truth. We have, in  our 
churches and associations, declared non-fellowship for the modern 
missionary system, and all its kindred institutions. We have  not 
come out from them, but we have put them away from among us,  and 
we now live in peace and harmony. Although the tongue of  slander 
has  been employed against us with malice and rage, by the  whole 
body  of anti-christ, the God in whom we trust, has not  forsaken 
us,  he  is still remembering us in mercy.  Our  Association  has 
just past; peace and harmony abounds in all our churches, and God 
in  the  plenitude  of  his mercy is adding  to  several  of  our 
churches,  such  as  we trust shall be  saved.  Since  our  March 
meeting, I have baptized nine willing converts, and this day I am 
to  baptize one more; and all these but two, in the church  where 
my  membership  is. Brotherly love, and christian  affection  for 
each other, abounds, among the members, and the good cause  seems 
to be on the onward march, without the use of anxious benches, or 
any  thing  of  the modern effort system.  We  believe  that  God 
begins,  carries  on,  and finishes his  own  work,  without  the 
agency,  efforts,  means or measures of sinful  mortals.  We  are 
reproached,  and evil is spoken of us for trusting alone  in  the 
Living  God,  but we are told in the scriptures, "Cursed  is  man 
that trusteth in man, and that maketh flesh his arm." Jesus says, 
"I  give  unto them eternal life, and they shall  never  perish." 
What   a  blessed  assurance!   In  this  world  ye  shall   have 
tribulation,  but in me ye shall have peace.  Again, "Be of  good 
cheer, for I have overcome the world."  "Greater is he that is in 
you,  than he that is in the world." Paul says, Ye are dead,  and 
your  life is hid with Christ in God, and when Christ who is  our 
life  shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in  glory.   
O, what a heavenly consolation. When we shall have done with  our 
sufferings  in  this unfriendly world, we shall all  appear  with 
Christ,  our  blessed  Savior,  in glory.  Not  one  of  all  the 
redeemed family will be left behind. The inquiry arises, Shall  I 
be  among them there? I can only say, if I am, it will  be  alone 
for  what Jesus has done, and not for anything that I have  done, 
or can do.
Yours in gospel bonds,



Signs of the Times, Vol. 21, No. 9, May 1, 1853, page 70.
Cass Co., Ill., March 10, 1853.

peace be multiplied to you all, through Jesus Christ our  Savior. 
The  Apostle  Paul  declares that the dear children  of  God  are 
blessed with all spiritual blessings, in Christ Jesus. And if so, 
then they are not blessed with any out of him. He also assures us 
that  they were chosen in Christ Jesus, before the foundation  of 
the world. This is what made David say, "Lord, thou hast been our 
dwelling  place in all generations, even from  everlasting,"  &c. 
The prophet Isaiah testified the same thing when he said that he, 
(Christ) "carried them and bare them all the days of old."   Also 
that  their name is graven on the palms of his hands,  and  their 
walls continually before him. Oh what a heavenly union of  Christ 
and  his people. Jesus says to the Father, "Thou hast loved  them 
even  as thou hast loved me," and "thou hast loved me before  the 
foundation of the world."

     Dear  brethren  and sisters, can you help loving  this  soul 
comforting  and  God  honoring doctrine which  is  so  abundantly 
taught  in  the scriptures? Jesus did not die for us to  make  us 
his,  but because we were his; because we are not born  again  of 
the  Spirit to make us the children of God, but "because  ye  are 
sons, God hath sent forth the spirit of his Son into your  heart, 
crying  Abba  Father." Let us pray with and for each  other,  and 
strive to keep the unity of the spirit in the bonds of peace.



Signs of the Times, Vol. 21, No. 12, June 15, 1853, pages 90,91.
Cass Co., Ill. April 13, 1853.

DEAR  BROTHER BEEBE:- The Signs comes to me regularly,  and  they 
are  truly a welcome messenger at all times to me.   I  sometimes 
feel  a  disposition to write something for publication  in  your 
columns, but feeling a deep sense of my weakness and inability  I 
am  often led to decline doing so; and when I read the many  able 
communications of your correspondents, I fear that I should  only 
tax your patience, which has also served to deter me. But while I 
believe it is right to contend earnestly for the faith which  was 
once  delivered  to the saints, I am sorry to see  anything  like 
heated  discussions among brethren, or a spirit of  harshness  in 
the  "Signs."  In  these discussions  I  have  not  participated, 
neither have I any intention to do so at this time, for I do  not 
wish to protract them. But feeling a deep interest in the subject 
of  the  late discussions, I hope you will not think it  hard  or 
take  it amiss, if I, in my weakness, propose a few questions  to 
you.   Paul  says,  "They  that are  strong  ought  to  bear  the 
infirmities of the weak." I really want information on the points 
on which I ask it. I believe the scriptures abundantly prove that 
Christ is the Head and life of the Church, which is his body, the 
fulness of him that filleth all in all, and the pillar and ground 
of  the  truth. But to the point. Natural life was  given  us  in 
Adam, our natural head, and in him all his posterity are  blessed 
with  all natural or temporal things that we  receive.  Spiritual 
life  was given to the church in Christ, her spiritual Head,  and 
she is blessed in him with all spiritual blessings. Now, my  dear 
brother,  the question with me is, Was it Christ as a  quickening 
spirit that died, or was it his humanity? He says, "sacrifice and 
burnt  offerings thou wouldest not, neither hadst  thou  pleasure 
therein; but a body hast thou prepared me." Was it the body  that 
died,  or was it the me for whom the body was prepared?  He  bore 
our  sins  in his body on the tree. Could Christ,  the  spiritual 
life  of  the church, as such, die? It seems plain to me  that  a 
spirit  cannot die in the sense that Christ died. He possessed  a 
human  body and a reasonable soul; the prophet says,  "When  thou 
shalt make his soul an offering for sin," &c. He was put to death 
in  the  flesh,  quickened by the spirit. He  says,  my  soul  is 
exceeding sorrowful, even unto death. On the tree of the cross he 
cried, It is finished! and bowed his head and gave up the  ghost. 
I  may  be  wrong,  but  it seems to  me,  that  from  a  serious 
examination  of the subject, Christ in his divine nature, is  the 
life of the church, and not in his human nature. In this view  of 
the  subject, brother Beebe, I will not contend that  his  divine 
nature died. He was the life of the church before he took on  him 
our  nature. I have thought the life of the church  was  eternal, 
without beginning or end; then the question arises, what did die, 
that pertains to Christ? Could that part, or in other words, that 
nature that did eternally exist, die? If not, and that  spiritual 
nature  is the life of the church, then the life of  the  church, 
did  not die. If the human nature of Christ that did die, is  the 
life  of  the  church, it seems to me, it is  not  eternal.  Dear 
brother,  I am not striving for mastery, but I have done  what  I 
felt  to be my duty to do. If I know my heart, I would  not  hurt 
your  feelings  nor any of the dear children of  God,  under  any 
consideration, and if I thought this would have that tendency,  I 
would  now  put it in the fire. You can reply  to  the  foregoing 
without  hurting  my feeling in the least; indeed  I  desire  you 
should do so, for I want all the information that I can get. If I 
am wrong, I want to see it.

     I  see  in  the  Signs that  brother  Benjamin  Griffin,  of 
Mississippi, has proposed to publish a history of the Old  School 
Baptists.  Such  a history is greatly neeeded, this is  felt  and 
acknowledged  by all our brethren, and more than ever  since  the 
New  School  Baptists have the audacity, in the  absence  of  all 
truth,  to  claim for themselves that they are the old  order  of 
Baptists.   I hope all of the old order of Baptists will do  what 
they  can to encourage brother Griffin to go on with the work.  I 
am certain that there has all the time been a true church on  the 
earth, ever since it was set up, that it has never been swallowed 
up by paganism or popery. Through the dark reign of which,  there 
has  always been a persecuted people, who have been  hunted  down 
like wild beasts, and put to all manner of cruel deaths that  the 
imagination of devils could invent. Jesus said, "thou art  Peter, 
and upon this rock I will build my church." He did not say,  that 
he   and  the  preacher,  or  he  together  with  a   system   of 
instrumentalities and means; but, I will build my church, and the 
gates  of hell shall not prevail against it." The church  is  the 
pillar  and ground of truth, and the fulness of him that  filleth 
all in all, the body of Christ. This one body hath many  members, 
it  is  knit  together  with joints and bands,  so  that  if  one 
suffers, all suffer. Let us then strive to keep the unity of  the 
spirit in the bonds of peace.

      Yours in gospel bonds,



Signs of the Times, Vol. 21, No. 18, September 15, 1853, p. 140
Cass Co., Ill., July 22, 1853.

BROTHER  BEEBE:-  I  have just received the 12th  number  of  the 
Signs,  in which I find my letter of inquiry, and your  reply.  I 
have  read your reply with great delight and with a  considerable 
degree  of satisfaction; yet there are some points in this  deep, 
and  mysterious  subject on which I am not  fully  satisfied.  An 
apology  is  due  you for my writing on  this  subject  when  the 
controversy  had ceased in the Signs. I assure you it was not  my 
design  to  revive  the  controversy,  but  I  wrote  merely  for 
information.  Having been from home last winter, several  numbers 
which came during my absence were mislaid, so that I had not  the 
privilege  of  reading the whole discussion. I have  lately  come 
across  one of the numbers containing letters from  the  brethren 
Barton  and  Trott,  which I read with  great  pleasure.  Brother 
Trott's  views of the two goats met my views precisely.  My  dear 
brother,  my mind has of late been much engaged in study  and  to 
search  on the glorious and sublime subject of the One  offering, 
which forever perfected them that are sanctified; and the more  I 
study, the more sublime and deep the mystery appears to me. I can 
in  truth adopt the words of the apostle,  "Without  controversy, 
great  is  the  mystery of Godliness, God  was  manifest  in  the 
flesh," &c. 

     In  your answer to my first question, viz., "Was it  Christ, 
as  a quickening Spirit, that died? or was it his  humanity?  You 
reply  "We do not know that the term "humanity" is any  where  in 
the  scripture  applied to Christ."  Neither do  I  precisely  in 
those  words; but it seems to me that there is sufficient in  the 
scriptures  to  justify us in using the term. The  apostle  says, 
Verily  he took not on him the nature of angels, but he  took  on 
him  the seed of Abraham.  The seed of Abraham was a human  seed. 
See Heb. 2:15, II. Peter 1:5; Phil. 2:3; and Rom. 1:8.  Here Paul 
says,  "He [Christ] was made of the seed of David"; and again  it 
is  said, "He was made of a woman, made under the law, to  redeem 
them that were under the law." See Gal. 4:4,5.  He is called  the 
seed of the woman, Gen. 3:15. These scriptures prove, to my  mind 
at  least,  that he was identified with and a partaker  of  human 
nature  at least in part. The children being partakers  of  flesh 
and  blood,  he also took part of the same. When I use  the  term 
humanity, I use it in reference to what is called man, or the son 
of  man; to his corporal body of flesh, bone and blood which  was 
seen  here in this sin-stained world, that which was born of  the 
virgin  Mary, and which grew in stature to man; and of which  the 
prophet says, He was a man of sorrows and acquainted with  grief, 
Isa.  53:3;  Zech.  8:7. I do not believe that  the  humanity  of 
Christ existed from everlasting; with yourself, I have failed  to 
comprehend  how the eternal Godhead could be begotten or  derived 
or  subordinate, without detraction from the views of him as  the 
absolute  Jehovah. I am confident that Christ Jesus did exist  as 
the son of God and spiritual Head and Life of the church, in  his 
mediatorial office, before he came into this world. Right here is 
where  I want information. Dear brother, suffer me to ask  you  a 
few more questions, that you may more fully understand me.

     1.  Did  Christ  possess a body in human form  -  flesh  and 
blood, before he came into this world, as he did after he came?

     2.  Did he eternally exist in his Mediatorial  headship,  or 

     3.   God, Jehovah is abundantly spoken of in the  scriptures 
as  having  component parts as man, - head,  eyes,  mouth,  arms, 
hands, feet, &c. Do these personify him in his Godhead or as  the 
Mediatorial  Headship, or both? Your explanation of Christ  as  a 
quickening spirit, as the anti-type of Adam is satisfactory.  But 
I  do not understand you where you say that Adam's soul  was  the 
natural  life  of  all his posterity. I  had  thought  that  Adam 
possessed  a natural life and a living soul. As to Christ, as  to 
the Son of God, and the Head and Life of the church in quickening 
dead sinners, John 5:21, if Jesus Christ, as the Mediatorial Head 
and  Life of the church, did not exist before the world was,  how 
could  grace  have  been  given the  church  in  him  before  the 
foundation  of  the  world?  To my weak mind,  if  Christ  had  a 
beginning,  in his Mediatorial relation to his church, the  union 
and  relationship  between  them could not be  eternal;  for  the 
church could not exist in him as her head, when he, as a head did 
not  exist. Dear brother, I would like to hear from you  on  this 
point.  I  have  long believed that Christ as  the  Head  of  the 
church,  eternally existed, and without beginning; and he is  the 
Life of the church; and the fulness of the Godhead dwells in  him 
bodily, in his Mediatorial Headship. Gal. 3:20; and 3:19; I. Tim. 
2:5; Heb. 8:6; and 9:15; and 12:24.

     Is not what we call the humanity of Christ frequently called 
Jesus  Christ  in  the scriptures? It does not seem  to  me  that 
Christ  as Mediator, in his then exalted state,  possessed  flesh 
and blood, nor that he could be subject of suffering; and if I am 
correct we see the necessity of his taking on him a body of flesh 
and  blood, and human nature; and yet without sin; for he was  as 
holy and pure as the law, could die in the room and stead of poor 
perishing  sinners.  I do not think that a mere  human  sacrifice 
would have met the demands of the law; but I view his offering to 
be  something  more. His conception was miraculous,  and  he  was 
holy,  harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners;  and  made 
higher than the heavens.

     My  dear  brother,  I do not think it right  to  apply  that 
passage, Jer. 17:5, "Cursed is man that trusteth in man, and that 
maketh  flesh  his arm," to the man Christ Jesus; it  alludes  to 
poor fallen sinful man. Christ is called a man frequently in  the 
scriptures. See Zech. 1:7; Matt. 26:7; John 7:40; I. Cor.  15:47; 
Exod. 15:3; Isa. 53, 8; Phil. 2:8; I. Tim. 2:3; Luke 19:14. These 
all  prove  that he who died for our sins was a man;  but  not  a 
sinful fallen man.  Then it is right for me to trust in this  man 
as  our Life, strength and righteousness. Now, my  brother,  this 
man,  Christ Jesus, possessed a body of flesh and blood which  he 
did not dwell in until he came in this world.  If I am not  wrong 
in  reference to his body.   See Rom. 1:3; Gal. 4:5; Luke  26:28; 
I. Cor. 11:24; Rom. 7:4; I. Cor. 10:19; and 11:27; Heb. 10:5; &c.  
You will find in this list of scriptures, that it is the blood of 
Jesus Christ the Son of God, that cleanseth us from all sins; and 
that  the saints are redeemed with the precious blood of  Christ. 
The saints overcame the beast by the blood of the Lamb. This  man 
that possessed flesh and blood must be the man that suffered  and 
died on the tree of the cross.  This same body that died and  was 
laid  in the tomb was quickened by the spirit, on the  third  and 
appointed day, arose and appeared to his disciples, and told them 
to handle him, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones  as 
they saw him have. He is the same character that ascended up into 
heaven  in  a  bright cloud, and is to come  again  in  the  same 

     Dear  brother,  I  have not written this  for  the  sake  of 
controversy,  but  that  you may more fully know  my  views,  and 
whether  my  mind is not clear on your views. I  desire,  if  you 
publish  this,  that  you would be  particular  in  noticing  the 
questions I have proposed, for on them I want help.

     Dear  brother, you returned this question to me, thus,  "Did 
John,  in Rev. 1, see anything more than the human nature of  our 
Redeemer?  I answer, I think he did; for he saw Him  that  liveth 
and  was dead; but this is not all the heavenly  personage  which 
John  saw declared himself to be. He said, I am Alpha and  Omega, 
the  beginning and the end, the First and the Last: I am he  that 
liveth and was dead, and behold, I am alive forever more,  Amen."  
It  is certain that he saw him that was once dead; but  from  the 
language  used,  it  is certain that he saw  him   with  all  the 
fulness  of the Godhead dwelling in him bodily. Alpha  and  Omega 
are  the  first and the last letters in the Greek  alphabet,  and 
they  represent  and include all the alphabet. So he  uses  those 
words  to show that he is the eternal Jehovah as well as the  man 
Christ Jesus, that was dead and is alive.

      Your next question is, "Is it in a human nature that Christ 
holds the keys of hell and death?"

     Answer.  We  cannot understand that  human  nature  inhabits 
eternity,  yet, we do believe that body that bled and  died,  did 
arise,  and that it was that body and the life of that body  that 
death and hell triumphed over for three days and nights; but that 
body was quickened into life, and arose from the dead, not  empty 
handed;  but with the keys of hell and death.  But did  not  that 
Spirit  by which he was raised from the dead act an exalted  part 
in  unison or oneness with him who was raised from the  dead,  in 
obtaining the glorious victory over hell and death?

     Your  third  question,  "Is he not the same of  whom  it  is 
written,  "Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of  flesh 
and  blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same;  that 
through death, he might destroy him that had the power of  death, 
that is the devil?" We answer with full confidence, Yes.

     Dear  brother, I do not want to trouble  you  unnecessarily; 
but want to know the truth as it is in Jesus. I suppose that some 
of  the dear brethren think that a discussion of  this  important 
subject in the "Signs of the Times," is unprofitable; but in  all 
candor,  I  must differ with them. If I am not deceived,  I  have 
been  greatly  comforted  and edified  by  the  late  discussion, 
although there has been some harsh language used, that ought  not 
to be indulged in by brethren.

     I  am  now  in  the forty-eighth year of  my  age,  and  for 
nineteen  years,  I have been, in my poor weak manner  trying  to 
preach the Lord Jesus Christ, as a crucified and risen Savior, as 
the Way, the Truth, and the Life; and that there is no other  way 
unto the Father but by him, nor any other name under heaven given 
among men whereby we must be saved; yet I feel  that I have  made 
but  little  progress  in the knowledge of  heavenly  and  divine 
things. Still I rejoice that through the grace of God, I am  what 
I am.

     Your affectionate but unworthy brother in gospel bonds,


Signs of the Times, Vol. 21, No. 22, Nov. 15, 1853, p 174.

Cass County, Ill., Oct. 22, 1853.

BROTHER BEEBE:- For the satisfaction of yourself and that of  all 
the brethren and sisters to whom this may come, greeting, I  feel 
inclined to give you an outline sketch of the faith and  practice 
of  the Old Baptists in this section of our far western  country. 
We are known in this State by the name of Regular Baptists. There 
are about eighteen Associations of our faith in the State. Up  to 
the   year  1834  [Note:  this  should  be  1832],   the   modern 
Missionaries greatly troubled our churches, with their money  and 
effort systems, and succeeded in corrupting and prostituting some 
churches. In 1834 [1832] the churches composing the  Associations 
declared  non-fellowship  with  the  modern  Missionary  systems, 
together with all its kindred institutions; the associations made 
the same declaration of non-fellowship, and spread it on the face 
of  their Minutes, and thus we got rid of a set of  money  loving 
arminians,  who  thereupon  hurled at us the  thunders  of  their 
indignation  and  blind infatuation, without regard to  truth  or 
honesty.  But  notwithstanding their malice, and the  slander  of 
their tongues, we enjoyed peace, and harmony of sentiment in  the 
doctrine.  Ministers who had never seen each other in the  flesh, 
would  meet  together at our Associations and proclaim  the  same 
glorious  truth from the stands without a jarring  or  discordant 
note. They unitedly declared that the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost 
are the one God; that man was created in the image, and after the 
likeness  of God, and that man had sinned and transgressed  God's 
holy law, and incurred the penalty thereof, which is death;  that 
man  by reason of sin, is totally depraved and altogether  unable 
to  render the least satisfaction to the law and justice  of  God 
for  the sins he has committed; that the old and  new  testaments 
are  the revealed will of God, to men, and contain the only  rule 
of  faith and practice to the saints of God. There was a  oneness 
of   sentiment   in  the  doctrine  of  eternal,   personal   and 
unconditional  election;  in which they held that God  chose  his 
people  in  Christ Jesus, their elect Head, in  the  covenant  of 
redemption  which is ordered in all things and sure;  that  their 
number  is  so definitely fixed that not one can be added  to  or 
diminished  from it; and that the elect, in common with all  men, 
had  an  earthly existence in Adam, as an earthly head,  and,  in 
that  head they all sinned, and are by nature children of  wrath, 
and  that  Jesus as the surety of his people, has  redeemed  them 
unto God with his blood, out of every kindred, tongue and nation. 
And  it has for many years been the theme of the Old Baptists  in 
this  State,  that salvation is alone of the  Lord,  without  any 
agency, instrumentality  or means; that it is God who  quickeneth 
the  dead sinner into life, by his Spirit, through Jesus  Christ, 
and  gives  them  eyes  to  see, ears  to  hear,  and  hearts  to 
understand; that it is God that worketh in them both to will  and 
to do of his good pleasure; so that they must freely come to  him 
through   Christ,  confessing  the  justice  of  God   in   their 
condemnation, to the end of the law. And, here it pleases him who 
commanded  the light to shine out of darkness, to shine in  their 
hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in 
the  face  of Jesus Christ. And that the saints are kept  by  the 
power  of God, through faith unto salvation; and that not one  of 
them  for  whom Christ died will ever be lost.  We  believe  that 
baptism  and the Lord's Supper are ordinances of the church,  and 
that  believers  are the only subjects. We do  not  believe  that 
baptism  is  an initiating ordinance, by which we  enter  in  the 
church,  but an ordinance in the church; that the  subjects  must 
enter the House, or Kingdom, by faith in Christ, before they  can 
partake  of  the things which are in the House,  or  Kingdom.  We 
believe  in  a general judgment, and in the resurrection  of  the 
just  and of the unjust, and that the joys of the righteous,  and 
punishment of the wicked, will be eternal in its duration. 

     I  believe that what I have written embraces an  outline  of 
the  general  sentiments  of the Old Baptists  of  this  country; 
although of late, there is not that perfect oneness of  sentiment 
that  there  has  been. It seems that some in our  ranks  have  a 
hankering  after the flesh-pots of Egypt. The idea that God  uses 
the  gospel  as  a means, and the preachers  as  instruments,  in 
quickening  sinners,  is  getting a considerable  hold,  in  some 
places;  which if persisted in, I fear will prove detrimental  to 
the peace of many of God's children; yet we feel to trust in  the 
Living God.

     I  attended the Morgan Association, on Saturday  before  the 
third  Sunday  in  August and the two  following  days;  and  the 
Sangamon on Saturday before the fourth Sunday, and two  following 
days;  the  Spoon River, on Saturday before the first  Sunday  in 
September and two following days; Concord, on Saturday before the 
second,  and two following days. All of these  associations  were 
largely attended by the churches and preaching brethren, and with 
large  assemblages of people. The preaching was all of  a  piece, 
with but few exceptions. The churches all seem to be in peace. At 
some  of these meetings, the presence of the Lord was  abundantly 
manifested.  I tried to preach, almost day and night,  throughout 
this long tour.

     At our last church meeting, there was a man came forward and 
told  the  church what he hoped the Lord had done  for  him,  his 
relation was altogether satisfactory, and the church received him 
and he is to be baptized at our next meeting.
Your unworthy brother, in gospel bonds,



Memorial to Elder Cyrus Wright

A communication written last November, announcing the death of Hon. Cyrus Wright, never reached you. It is not too late to say a few words for so good a man.

He departed this life on the 29th of October, last (1854) at his residence in Big Puncheon Camp Grove, Cass County, Illinois. Mr. Wright was 49 years of age, having been a Baptist Minister 20 years. He was a man possessed of a genius, energy, and enterprise that ranked him among the first in the history of self-taught men. He was possessed of the truest sense of right and wrong - a republican sentiment - a Christian in heart - and a gentleman in his daily walk.

With the boldness of a lion, the towering flight of the eagle, like a hero, he stood among his fellows, combatting error. How often has the ear of the writer been entranced by the music of his incomparable voice, with his heart overwhelmed by the unanswerable logic of his arguments!

Mr. Wright was no ordinary man. He commenced his career scarcely able to read, yet when he ended it he was a man of uncommon abilities. While a candidate for the legislature, Mr. Wright met continually on the stump one of the most eminent lawyers and successfully shivered every position taken by him, with his masterly logic on the one hand and the Constitution for his guide on the other, and was triumphantly elected to the legislature, where he was eminently the leader of his party.

The sickly policy of Abolitionism and Maine lawism, quailed before him at every step. The furious abolitionist and the foaming liquor law fanatics cowered before his manly eye, and were met and made powerless. Skulking Know-Nothingism, with his treasonable and contaminated form, withered before his patriotic gaze and shrunk back to its dark den to gloat in secret over designs and plots it was fearful to utter in the light of day.

Noble man! Great and good in life, calm and resigned in death, he laid his hand upon his heart and turning his eyes toward heaven, and with a look of ineffable composure said, "I am resigned. I am at peace. It is all right here. It is all right here." Such says an eye-witness, were the last words of that great man.

Mr. Wright lived and died a firm believer in the doctrine of salvation by grace, which cannot be better expressed than by the language of the immortal Cowper:

"That oars alone can ne'er previl to reach that distant coast,
The breath of heaven must swell and sail, or all the toil is lost."

Many hundreds of citizens of all parties attended his funeral sermon, and subscription being present, in a few minutes more money was raised than asked, to erect a marble monument to his memory. It was to be placed over his grave in his beloved churchyard where he lies, and will quietly rest until the last trump shall summon the earth to give up the dead."

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